Palette Magazine

Summer 2015 Trend: Dashing and Debonair

Justin Trabert

The J. Crew store at Village of Merrick Park has the goods.
The J. Crew store at Village of Merrick Park has the goods. Courtesy of J. Crew

By now everyone should be familiar with the term “hipster.” All around us men grow neat beards and sport dapper suits, while women don high-waisted trousers and patent leather d’orsay pumps. Perhaps the movement began with the release of The Great Gatsby, the popularity of “Mad Men” or with my beloved “Downton Abbey.” No matter how it got started — in the spirit of being one of the “cool” kids — I traded in my shorts and polo shirts for slacks and blazers and promoted my vodka drink to a signature crafted gin cocktail, with a knowing nod to Prohibition. 

But as we say goodbye to the seminal shows that may have inspired our most dapper days in recent memory, a shift beyond what is considered quintessential hipster style is sure to ensue. What I hope will linger is this idea of a bespoke manner of dress and a clean, crisp appearance that says, “I’m ready for anything.”

To recreate the look in a way that works for you, start with slim cut tailored suiting, but look for modern twists. A slim pant can give your body a slender and sleek shape — note that does not mean leggings.  Many different cuts taper around the ankle but don’t cut off your circulation. If you want a more modern approach, try shortening your pants to just above the ankle. Removing the crease at the bottom gives you a clean, straight line.

Your jacket should be perfectly tailored to fit your body so that it cinches at the waist but allows your arms plenty of reach; finding the perfect tailor to make alterations is key. For a more casual approach, try khaki slacks with a blazer or something in seersucker — a classic summer fabric.

Next, find the perfect fitted collared shirt. Don’t be afraid to inject your own style with fun fabrics, vibrant colors, plaids, stripes, polka dots or florals — anything goes. In fact, big floral print is a must-have this summer. Women can opt for additional detailing, like Peter Pan collars. 

Then layer your suit with the right accoutrements like skinny ties and corresponding pocket squares.  For those brave enough to go full-on hipster, a bowtie is definitely the way to go. Mismatch the tie and pocket square with different patterns like stripes with floral or polka dots with plaid; just make sure the color story makes sense with your overall look.  Update your tie and pocket square selections and opt for combinations in cotton, instead of silk.

 And let’s not forget the most important accessory: the shoe. A gentleman can never go wrong with a classic wingtip or a preppy loafer. And ladies, while I love a great stiletto, chunky heels, platforms and wedges are all the rage this summer.  

We may never know exactly how and when we decided to climb the fashion ladder and embrace “hipster” styling, but what we can’t deny is that it got us out of the frumpy rut of the early 2000s and catapulted us straight into a time of casual elegance and sophistication.  And for that I am forever grateful.

In the Details

Accessories make an outfit, and where would we be in South Florida without sunglasses and hats? Pick out a new set of heavy framed shades in a wood, tortoiseshell or translucent material to create a modern look with vintage style. As for hats, try something in straw with a wide brim to wear poolside.